One day in 1978, while the clock was being wound, one of the clock weights fell and smashed the fourth bell wheel. In order to raise some money to have this repaired, I designed and marketed a cardboard model bell kit for use in bell towers to demonstrate the mechanics of how a bell rings.
In 1982, with the help of some of the young ringers at Sherbourne, I wrote by hand, and photocopied a small booklet for teaching learners to ring. By 1985 the demand was so great that it was rewritten onto A4 paper and when *Sotherans of Redcar (the friendly bellringer printer), printed the first 2500 copies of the ONE-PER-LEARNER BOOK we sold out in three weeks! Sherbourne Teaching-aids was launched.
In 1987 the FOLLOW-ON BOOK was published and in 1988 the RINGERS' EXERCISE BOOK was added to the range. The MODEL BELL was resurrected as a made-up wooden model, and METHOD-MAKER, BELL CLUB and the 20 QUESTIONS recruiting leaflet followed.
The Model Bell and the Method Maker have gone permanently to their manufacturer, Alan Hartley, a Worcestershire ringer, his details on the How to Order page.
Over a period of time costs have increased, particularly in respect of postage and consequently there is no "profit" to be shared out to the respective associations of purchasers. In the interests of making the publications widely available at reasonable cost, the elimination of the "dividend" was seen as preferable to increasing prices.
Over the years both Pam and Ted Copson have sent out countless parcels with very few going astray and the continued availability of the Sherbourne Teaching Aids range is a tremendous legacy. Sadly Pam is no longer with us and Ted is no longer able to carry on the distribution process which has passed to the Central Council of Church Bell Ringers Publications, currently administered by Mrs Barbara Wheeler.